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View Poll Results: Which is the best genration of Trans Am's
1st generation 10 22.73%
2nd generation 20 45.45%
3rd generation 4 9.09%
4th generation 10 22.73%
Voters: 44. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-14-2005, 01:12 PM   #46
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

Gotta love this brand loyalty despite the facts stuff!

The 455 Super Duty was FAR from a boat anchor. On this very site, the list of the 50 fastest musclecars places the '73 455SD at #15 which is the highest placing Pontiac on the list ahead of #31, '68 Firebird RA400; #45, a '62 421SD Catalina and #48 a '70 Trans Am RA400 (RAIII, I assume). As this CLEARLY demonstrates, the lower NET rating of the 455SD should not be compared to the earlier GROSS hp numbers.
In fact, the '73 and '74 Super Duty cars were as fast as the fastest musclecars built despite the huge burden of meeting much more stingent polution control mandates. I don't own a Pontiac and never have, but I will give credit where credit is due.
I also have very little interest in performance potential of various engines, I am more interested in how they performed bone stock. I can only imagine what Pontiac would have accomplished if they had produced the 455SD in 1970 when they should have. With 10.5 - 11:1 compression and a RAIV Cam, I'd be willing to bet the big SD would have given the Hemi and LS-6 stiff competition to say the least and would have overshadowed the Olds 455 W-30 and Buick 455 Stage I. For whatever reason, Pontiac chose to hamper themselves by having their top dog production engine (the 400 RA1V) deal with a 55 cubic inch displacement disadvantage. The 455HO was a milder engine than the 400 RAIV. Why they didn't make a 455 RAIV, I'll never figure out.
Anyway, I digress;
- My favourite Trans Am would be a '73 455SD car followed closely by a '71 or '72 T/A (455HO and M-22), followed by a '70 400 RAIII car.

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Old 05-06-2005, 03:14 AM   #47
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

Quote:
Originally Posted by 73455transam
Got to be the 2nd Gen. The very best year is a '73 with a SD-455
.............definitely.



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Old 05-20-2005, 03:24 PM   #48
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Im not sure about performance differences but when it comes to style i prefer the newer 4th gen(with the ram air hood of course) and then the classic 1st gen.
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Old 05-20-2005, 06:05 PM   #49
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

Toxicracer,
Then you would have DEFINITELY liked John Welter's '99 Firebird at VMP last weekend. 6.82 @ 204 (1/4 mile, 440 CID PONTIAC, no Chevy parts). It was the quickest ET in Pontiac history. The MPH isn't a record, as the F/Cs from the late '60s went around 220, but in the low 7s.
Just for those that believe you can't make power with the Injun... Just wait 'til he puts the 505 CID version in there. It's already dynoed at 2,880 HP.
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Old 07-30-2005, 09:19 PM   #50
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunstar1
Personally I prefer the 2nd gen due to the SD-455. Give me a 73 SD-455 and I'd be happy forever. The 73-74 SD's could easily run 13's stock. Considering what everybody else inside and outside GM produced at the time, that's pretty good. The SD's were the fastest cars from GM in 73-74.

To clairify a couple of earlier posts, no 318 ever made anything close to 310 hp and 390 ft-lbs from the factory.
Yes, those '73 SD-455s were fast- could run a 1/4 mile in about 13.8 secs.

I like best the '68 Ram Air IV Firebird 400.

It's going back quite a few years, but the '57 318 2x4 bbl in the '57 Plymouth Fury was rated at 290 hp.
There were also a few Hemi-powered DeSotos which made a lot of power from small V-8s, like the 341 with 320 hp in '56 and the 345 engine rated at 345 hp in '57.
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Old 08-01-2005, 09:23 AM   #51
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

At the risk of stirring the pot... Ram Air IV was introduced in '69, and about 88 Firebirds had them, mostly T'/As. The "round port" engine in '68 GTO was called "Ram Air II" (the '67 GTO had "Ram Air I"). The few '68 "Ram AIr" F-bodies I've seen were the 400 with #16 heads (D-ports). If they put the round port motor in the Firebird in '68, I have not seen one.
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Old 08-02-2005, 04:19 PM   #52
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Re: Re: Which Trans Am is the best

Quote:
Originally Posted by BleedDodge
That means Super Duty, and it's crap because it has 250 horse in a low compression block. It's got nothing on a '70 or '71 455, which had somewhere around 450 horsepower, everyone knows that.

An old Dodge 318 has just about as much power as that SD 455.
I would have to disagree. Former owner of a '73 GP with a 455 SD in it. No, in '73 there were 3 versions of the 455. the standard 455, an H.O. 455 and the SD 455. As I understand it, the major difference in the SD and HO was, among other things, being hand assembled. It's been awhile but recollection on last time I looked in a book on specs were in '73, the 455 rated around 250, the H.O. went 270, and the SD went 310, all in stock configuration.
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Old 08-10-2005, 01:55 PM   #53
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

decollect,
According to Pontiac information, only Trans Ams and a hand full of Formulas got the SD engine. The SD was the ONLY "round port" head in '73. The '70 455 HO was the only high compression 455 (10.5:1, D-port heads), '71 and 2 got the "HO" with round port heads, low compression. The SD was quite different, in the heads and block. There is extra ribbing in the valley to strengthen the weakest part of the block. There's also the "boss" cast in to the rear to allow a crescent-type dry sump pump to be installed, and the heads have a much wider intake port than any other Pontiac production casting. It's easily identified by the tube pressed into the head where the intake pushrods go through the head. They had to make room for the wider cross section.
NOTE: There were some publicity photos of a '73 Grand Am with SD badges, but the car was never released.
There were two other 455s in '73, true enough. One had a Rochester 4-bbl. and the other a 2-bbl.
Bleeddodge, the SAE "Net" ratings began in '71 with GM, and knocked about 20% off the "brake" numbers. No 318 Dodge EVER made the kind of power a 455 SD made. Pump one to the teeth, put a blower on it, and then MAYBE... Never forget the torque numbers... Horsepower numbers sell cars. Torque MOVES cars. With a cam change (to a factory Ram Air IV grind) and the addition of "bump top" pistons (provided back in the day by TRW, to make the compression ratio 10:1), 455 SD made well over 500 horsepower. There was no MOPAR offering in '73 or '74 that could touch the T/As with SD engines. The Hemi was the last gasp, and that ended in '72. Low compression 440s are pretty much turds...(factory versions, anyway)
Today, SD engines are prized by collectors and restorers. No need to carve them up for racing, as Edelbrock and Kaufmann have the cylinder head situation well in hand (modern heads make more power and cost less).
If you will refer to my posting on the general discussion page about Norwalk, you will see that there are no small block MOPARS making the kind of power the bigger Ponchos are making today. Maybe a "Cup" motor WITH a blower...
PAX
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Old 08-15-2005, 09:54 PM   #54
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I'm going to have to agree with the pack on this one:

1973 455SD

...and, --- in a perfect world, we could all go back, buy '70-73s for $3grand, come forward, use the $30K they want for the new vehicles of today, and put all that money into modding the classic...
ok, $10-12K into modding the classic; the other fifteen thousand, save for jet fuel!
then whether your talking net or gross, your looking @600HP/600TQ
minimum.
I know the non-Warrior owners around here would hate me.

...but back to reality, and my V6.
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Old 09-19-2005, 03:57 AM   #55
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Re: Re: Which Trans Am is the best

Quote:
Originally Posted by Autofreefindersguy
Now if only GM will BRING THEM BACK!
They might bring the Trans Am back.

GM reverses course, says revised version of Zeta rear-drive architecture is back on track

Automotive News

9/12/05

DETROIT - Six months after General Motors halted plans to use its Zeta rear-wheel-drive car architecture in North America, the company has revived the program.

In an interview with Automotive News last week, Jim Queen, GM's vice president of global engineering, said a revised version of Zeta is back on track.

Engineered at GM's Holden subsidiary in Australia, Zeta was expected to be the basis of the next-generation Pontiac Grand Prix and GTO; the Chevrolet Impala, Monte Carlo and a new version of the Camaro; and other vehicles. Vehicles in the program were expected to debut as early as 2006.

Queen did not discuss vehicles on the new version of Zeta or timing. Some vehicles that could be in the Zeta program include the next-generation Pontiac GTO as well as a Chevrolet coupe and sedans. They could debut by the 2009 or 2010 model year, say one company source and one industry analyst.

Queen said initial plans for Zeta stretched the architecture beyond its limits for some North American vehicles. "We needed to reassess and reconfigure the program," he said.

"As we started counting who was in and who was out of Zeta, we realized too late" that Zeta would not work in North America, Queen said.

Part of GM's reasoning in slowing Zeta's development was to focus on pulling forward its full-sized SUVs and pickups. GM's next-generation SUVs will debut early next year.

At the time, GM Vice Chairman Robert Lutz wrote on GM's FastLane blog that GM had "canceled plans to build rear-wheel-drive vehicles off the Zeta architecture."

"But that does not mean we've canceled plans to build rear-drive vehicles altogether," Lutz wrote. "We are simply reallocating resources (human and financial) to pull some other programs ahead and get other vehicles to market sooner."

The revised Zeta program is being developed in GM's Australian engineering center. The vehicle line executive on the program is Gene Stefanyshyn, the former vehicle line executive for GM's Epsilon, or mid-sized cars, in North America.

A GM spokesman said no product plans have been approved and that GM still is studying design themes, performance characteristics and variants for Zeta vehicles.

GM uses the term "architecture" to signify a common set of components, performance characteristics, a common manufacturing process, a range of dimensions and connecting points for key component systems.
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Old 09-21-2005, 09:23 PM   #56
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

I just simply love the 4th gen.

You just cant put it into words...

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Old 01-09-2006, 12:25 PM   #57
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

i like the 3rd and 4th gens
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Old 01-09-2006, 04:34 PM   #58
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

My fav is the second gen.
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Old 01-10-2006, 01:44 PM   #59
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Re: Which Trans Am is the best

no the third gen is better. lol
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Old 01-11-2006, 03:17 PM   #60
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Re: Re: Which Trans Am is the best

Quote:
Originally Posted by BleedDodge
That's why I compared that SD455 to a 318, because those SD455's are dawgs. It's like a boat motor or something.
Well bleed youe wrong, the SD455 is detuned I will grant you that, however what other F body 73-74 was faster? Or how about the same years?

Pontiac did keep the HP fire going all the way to 1979 when Pontiac Died, some say 1978 because the last of the 400s were cast in 78.

Pontiacs T/A program beat the snot out of any car made by chevy, dodge, ford from 73 to 79. You allways hear bad raps on PMD engines for many reasons, and if Mr. P can call a "time out" for a few seconds I'm sure he will be able to add to what I tell you about the SD and HO engines.

The SD and HO program was the high and low point of PMD, for years PMD wanted an engine that would stomp a mud hole in the Hemi and Chevys 454, and to shore up the Drag Race and Nascar seen, they got the engine to late, the engines you so quickly put down are nothing less then Race engines.

I should start first the Pontiac get bad raps from years of Chevy minded Pontiac drivers thinking they can spin it like a Chevy SB, also run lower octane like a Chevy engine.

You could never get a aftermarket crank for a long time, at least on a working mans pay, and the cranks used for beating on, are the same cranks that just live a full life in a GP or worse a GTO, then taken out and slaped into an engine for raceing. Then we get to the people who put the Engines together, most likely a place that only dose Chevys will not put a Pontiac together like it should, now we go on to the rods , just like the crank Pontiac people had no real after market rod, so years of use and SBC headed drivers with heavy aftermarket Pistons took these engines apart.

Now back to the SD HO engines, these engines were built as strong if not more then a 454 chevy, the block was set up for a dry sump oil system, it had a mass of extra cast webbing and a over sized Dist. hole. I'm sure I'm missing something here Mr. P.

The engines were kinda late for the times, those engines were sure to see the RAM AIR V heads that were allmost a 1 off of Fords Tunnel port heads. Those engines are really the pride and joy of PMD, the last push in engine design by PMD before it died.

A simple head change on those engines like to a #12 and a cam change makes thise engine a beast, a real street sweeper.


As far as the Poll I say the 1st and 2nd, the only truely Pontiac Powered F booty Pontiacs.
 
 
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